New study found Black and Hispanic patients account for more than half of in-hospital COVID-19 deaths

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In a new study from researchers from Stanford and Duke, researchers found that Black and Hispanic patients accounted for more than half of those who died in a hospital from COVID-19 in the first half of the year.

The study found that Black and Hispanic patients bore a greater burden of mortality and morbidity due to their disproportionate representation among COVID-19 hospitalizations.

According to the Stanford press release, "Fatima Rodriguez, MD, assistant professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford, is the lead author of the study, which was published Nov. 17 in CirculationTracy Wang, MD, professor of medicine at Duke University, is the senior author.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shown a spotlight on racial and ethnic disparities in health care that have been happening for years,” said Rodriguez, an expert in health disparities in cardiovascular medicine. “Our study shows an over-representation of Black and Hispanic patients in terms of morbidity and mortality that needs to be addressed upstream before hospitalization.”

"Yet a disproportionate number of Black and Hispanic people became sick enough to require hospitalization, and they made up 53% of inpatient deaths," the press release said.

The study “sought to identify racial/ethnic differences in presentation and outcomes for patients hospitalized with COVID-19.” Researchers looked at data on the first 7,868 patients by race/ethnicity treated at 88 hospitals across the country between Jan. 17, 2020 and July 22, 2020.

"Hispanic and Black patients were younger than non-Hispanic White and Asian patients and were more likely to be uninsured," the study said.

The study found among 7,868 patients hospitalized with COVID-19, 33.0% were Hispanic, 25.5% were non-Hispanic Black, 6.3% were Asian, and 35.2% were non-Hispanic White.